Welsh, derived from Matrona, Gaulic Celtic mother goddess and of the Marne River, meaning "Great Mother."
Daughter of Afallach, king of the Otherworld Avalon. In this aspect, she is identifiable with Morgan le Fay, and the Lady of the Lake. She is a Mother Goddess, in this case mother of Mabon ap Modron, supernatural hero and seasonal god, and thus identifiable with Rhiannon--both lost their sons as infants, and both are goddesses of sovereignty.
Based upon the poem "Pa Gwr," she is thought to have been impregnated by a hypothetical god Mellt, who is mentioned as the father of a Mabon; Mabon son of Modron is mentioned a few lines before. There has yet to be any literature produced to prove there was a god called *Meldos, the Gaulish reconstructio of Mellt, but he would be similar to the hypothetical *Bolgios, whose name means "lightning" and who is tied to Belinus.
If her consort was Mellt, this would fit the pattern of a river or water goddess mating with a storm god; the same pattern is seen in the mating of the Dagda and Boann to produce Oengus mac ind Og, the Irish counterpart to Mabon.
In some Welsh texts, she is said to be the wife of Urien of Rheged, and mother to Owein and his sister Morfudd. The connection between Mabon and Owein is strong in Welsh tradition. She is replaced by Morgan le Fay in French romance. It is significant that Morgan is associated with the isle of Avalon, whose name is tied to Modron's father Afallach.
Bromwich, Rachel. Trioedd Ynys Prydein. Cardiff: University of Wales Press, 2006.
Koch, John. The Celtic Heroic Age.
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Mary Jones © 2007